Lohani, Rana fight for plough as poll symbolThe Rastriya Prajatantra Party (Prajatantrik), which is currently in a bitter court battle with the Rastriya Prajatantra Party (RPP) over its validity, has picked up another fight with the Ekikrit Rastriya Prajatantra Party (Rastrabadi) over an election symbol.
The Rastriya Prajatantra Party (Prajatantrik), which is currently in a bitter court battle with the Rastriya Prajatantra Party (RPP) over its validity, has picked up another fight with the Ekikrit Rastriya Prajatantra Party (Rastrabadi) over an election symbol.
The Pashupati Shumsher Rana-led RPP (Prajatantrik) and the Ekikrit Rastriya Prajatantra Party (Rastra-badi), led by his former colleague at RPP-Prakash Chandra Lohani, both are seeking the plough as their election symbol for the provincial and federal parliamentary elections scheduled for November 26 and December 7.
Cow was the election symbol of the RPP-Nepal led by Kamal Thapa. The party was named RPP after a merger with the RPP led by Rana in November 2016. Although the party had contested the local elections in March with the cow as election symbol, it also had an option to choose the plough as its election symbol.
Lohani had quit the RPP in March and formed the new party. It had staked claim at the plough while applying for party registration at the Election Commission in July. Then on August 6, a group led by Rana left the RPP and formed the RPP(P).
While registering the party, the Rana’s party also sought the plough as its election symbol.
Lohani claimed that his party was the first one to demand the plough as election symbol and should be allotted the symbol. The EC holds the final authority to allocate election symbols to the contesting parties.
Rana’s party has been embroiled in a legal battle with the Thapa-led RPP after the latter filed a petition at the Supreme Court on August 27, demanding that the Election Commission’s decision to register the RPP(P) be scrapped.
Earlier, the SC had paved the way for the EC to register Rana’s party at the EC.
Meanwhile, there is another fight going on for election symbol ‘umbrella’ between the Rastriya Janata Party-Nepal and the Janashakti Nepal Party.
Although the RJP-N chose “bicycle” as its symbol for the third phase of local elections in Province 2, it has sought ‘umbrella’ for the provincial and federal parliamentary elections.
But the symbol is contested at the Supreme Court by the Ram Kumar Jha-led Janashakti Nepal Party which had first sought that symbol from the election body. The apex court had on July 24 demanded the EC explain why the fringe party was not given the election symbol. Further hearing on the case has been postponed frequently.
Keshav Jha, a senior leader of the RJP-N, said that they are waiting for EC’s decision on the matter. “If the EC gives the umbrella to another party, we will accept it as we already have bicycle as election symbol for the local elections,” he said, adding that his party had preferred the umbrella as poll symbol.